In Howard Beach, Queens, last night, Bob Turner delivered a very short victory speech to celebrate the end of a very long conservative drought. In around five minutes, he marked the end of 88 years of Democratic dominance in New York’s 9th congressional district.
Soft-spoken but honest and direct, he first attributed his election to the dissatisfaction with President Obama’s “irresponsible fiscal policies” and his “treatment of Israel”: The latter elicited the loudest cheers of his speech. He reemphasized his vocation as a “citizen-candidate” and concluded, “I promised you I’d get to work; I’d better go do that.” That the Irish Catholic Republican stood surrounded by Jewish leaders and Democratic politicians emphasized the improbability of his success: He won by 54 to 46 percent, a miraculous upset in a district where Democrats outnumber Republicans more than three to one.
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